ADHD Testing in Young Kids

Did you know that if a child is amongst the youngest in their elementary class, they are most likely to be diagnosed with ADHD?

Younger kids are naturally more likely to be fidgety, to struggle to regulate their bodies, to have difficulties socializing, and to be inconsistent with following directions and completing their work. Although it may sound like ADHD, it might just be because they are young for their grade.  If you think about it, this makes sense since there can easily be up to one year difference between the oldest and youngest child in a class. In other words, a 6-year-old is not the same as a 7-year-old!

A study published in The New England Journal of Medicine revealed that rates of diagnoses and treatment of ADHD were higher among children born in August than among children born in September in states with a September 1 cutoff for kindergarten entry.

Testing often helps disentangle this issue and avoid unnecessary treatment. Having a thorough neuropsychological evaluation that includes testing as well as parent and teacher feedback is crucial in determining whether a child may have attentional deficits. Given that we use standardized tests, we can compare a child’s performance to others their age, often close to the year and month. In other words, we can compare a 6-year-old to most 6 year olds! This allows us to determine whether the behaviors or difficulties exhibited by the child are ‘age appropriate’ or might represent an emerging attentional disorder.  This information is crucial as it guides the next steps, when it comes to putting forth the appropriate interventions that would best help each child meet their full potential.

If you have concerns about ADHD, we would be glad to help you! Please call us to schedule a consultation at 248-644-9466.